The theme of the 1998 meeting was: The Future of the Chesapeake Bay- Meeting New Challenges with Technology, Education and a Renewed Bay Agreement.

Established in 1983 under the historic Chesapeake Bay Agreement, the Bay Program is the partnership among Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, the Chesapeake Bay Commission, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Executive Council includes the top executives from each jurisdiction, the chair of the Bay Commission and the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. The members of the 1998 Executive Council are Maryland Governor Parris N. Glendening, chair; Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge; Virginia Governor James Gilmore III; District of Columbia Mayor Marion Barry, Jr.; Maryland State Delegate John Wood, Jr., chair of the Chesapeake Bay Commission; and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Carol M. Browner.

As the governing body of the Bay Program, the Excutive Council established the policy direction for the restoration and protection of the Bay and its living resources. The Executive Council sets goals and policy through agreements, amendments and directives. At this year's meeting the Executive Council will sign four new directives that address the future of the Bay restoration effort. The 1998 directives call for a regional watershed-based education initiative, a renewed Chesapeake Bay Agreement in the year 2000, more emphasis on innovative technologies in the overall Bay effort and for a concerted regional effort to manage the transport and use of animal waste in the region.

In other actions, the Executive Council accepted two documents and adopted a third in reponse to Directives signed at last year's annual meeting.

  • Accepted: The Priority Nutrient/ Sediment Reduction Areas Protocol, in response to Bay Program Directive 97-1, Baywide Nutrient Reduction Progress and Future Directions. The directive called on the Bay Program to develop by 1998 a protocol designed to help managers determine how nutrient goals and reduction efforts can further be targeted to areas of persistent high loadings, especially where evidence indicates a linkage to critical living resource or human health concerns.
  • Accepted: The jurisdiction's strategies for net gain in wetlands, in reponse to Bay Program Directive 97-2, Wetlands Protection and Restoration Goals. The directive called on the Bay jurisdictions to develop by 1998 strategies to achieve the protection and restoration of the wetlands resource, to establish a quantifiable wetland restoration and preservation goal and to define methods to measure success in meeting that goal. Overview of Jurisdictional Strategies for Implementing Executive Council Directive No. 97-2
  • Adopted: A strategy for implementing the Community Watershed Initiative, in response to Bay Program Directive 97-3, Community Watershed Initiative. The Initiative called on the Bay Program to develop by 1998 a strategy that would ensure the Bay Program commitments for nutrient and toxics reduction, Bay grasses, forest buffers, fish passage, land stewardship, local government involvement, public participation and that other goals would be integrated at the community watershed scale

News Release and Meeting Materials: